In the midst of the brouhaha that erupted from the termination of the billing and payments of water utility contract of SOFTtribe Limited which took effect from September 2, 2019, management of Ghana Water Company Limited (GWCL) has set the records straight at a press conference in Accra.
Setting the records straight, the Managing Director of GWCL, Ingineer Dr. Clifford A. Braimah expressed surprise in the attitudes and actions of the management of SOFTtribe led by Herman Kojo Chinery-Hesse to mislead the public that they were not consulted effectively before the contract was terminated on September 2, 2019
According to him, due diligence had been followed for the termination of the contract that, SOFTtribe was dully consulted and subsequently communicated to them at meetings about its (SOFTtribe) inability to meet the terms and conditions specified in the contract water billing software contract entered into in 2016.
In 2016 Softtribe presented a novel software for utilities billing and payments to Ghana Water Company and subsequently invited Ghana Water to partner as a co-investor for purposes of fine-tuning and for future sales to other utility companies across the continent for mutual financial gain.
The two entities have since jointly operated this water billing and payment solution.
At the outset of this partnership, Ghana Water set a base revenue target greater than what the company had hitherto been earning monthly which Ghana Water Company Limited was committed to pay a small percentage of the revenue realized above the set target to Softtribe, hence representing the only return on the investment made by SOFTtribe into the project.
However, on September 2, 2019, SOFTtribe received a notice of termination without any stated reasons from Ghana Water Company Limited.
This notice of termination, according to SOFTtribe was unexpected and was unaware of any issues that would warrant such a drastic move by a business partner, adding, it came when it (SOFTtribe) was in the middle of capital and resource-intensive expansion phase.
Reacting to the press statement issueecby the former President John Dramani Mahama, Dr. Braimah expressed misgivings about attitude of the former President opining that, His Excellency should have crosscheckex from the GWCL before issuing a press statement attacking the integrity of the new management of the company over the termination of SOFTtribe contract with the GWCL.
Touching on the numerous statements put in the public by the management of SOFTtribe since the termination of the contract with GWCL, he described it as misinformation just to soil and tarnish the image and reputation of the state institution, GWCL.
However, he used the occasion to assure Ghanaians that, the termination of SOFTtribe contract would not destroy the commercial billing and payment systems of the GWCL stressing that, the company will still deliver quality and affordable water and services to the people of Ghana.
Explaining further, he revealed that, “All the issues of termination of contract persisted for six months with deleterious effects on revenue which management referred the matter to the Board of Directors and SOFTtribe Limited was invited to the 15th regular meeting in March 2019 at Ada”.
When the board presented the issues to the SOFTtribe management and attributed the problems largely to the 100 per cent turnover, the chairman of SOFTtribe informed the board that it was none of our business”, he recounted.
However, explained that the board advised management to give SOFTtribe additional two months to fix all the issues raised which management of GWCL wrote to them (SOFTtribe) to fix all issues raised at the meeting within two months.
But instead of fixing the problems, he noted that, the management of SOFTtribe wrote unsatisfactory responses to the queries.
With regards to an IT audit conducted by an independent firm, it was discovered that ethical hacking provision in the contract had been violated since 2016, even though GWCL paid for it monthly.
Consequently, SOFTtribe he said could not provide a single report since 2016 adding that SOFTtribe failed to provide system documentation and back up of their source code on GWCL servers as mandated.
In a news report filed by Joy News, it would be recalled that, Armed security operatives on Monday September 25, 2019 raided the offices of software development powerhouse, SOFTtribe, and seized mobile phones of its staff.
On the accounts of SOFTtribe Technical Director, David Kwamena Bolton, heavily armed men, who claimed to be personnel from the National Security, presented what they claimed was a court order to confiscate mobile phones and electronic equipment of the company’s staff.
Alleging that, the court order presented at the Airport Residential office of the company was unsigned and unsealed.
“They confiscated all our phones. Initially, they wanted to take our laptops then they decided not to take them. So currently, none of our technical staff or directors is with their phones and we can’t operate as a company, he narrated on Joy FM’s Super Morning Show on Tuesday.
Speaking to the host of the show, Daniel Dadzie, he made known that, one of the company’s technical staff has been detained “and taken to the Ghana Water Company head office.”
The software company, whose founder, Herman Kojo Chinery-Hesse, is a celebrated successful African technologist, has said Ghana Water Company (GWCL) has unfairly terminated a water billing software contract entered into in 2016.
Source:www.thenewindependentonline.com/Ishmael Barfi firstname.lastname@example.org